Art for the New LBGT Community Center of Greater Cleveland – Test Print

It’s been wonderful working on a commission for the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland. Their new building, by Architecture firm WMF, with lead architect David Thal, in the Gordon Square Arts District in the Detroit Shoreway Neighborhood on Cleveland’s west side, is nearing completion. The building is modern, with its metal, glass and masonry planes. Yet, it also nods in respect to its neighbors, where it feels at home in its historic context.

I’m honored that my work will be part of the life of the building and the people of the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland. I hope the joyfulness this artwork makes me feel, is also experienced by those who interact with it. As a gay man, together with my husband Bruce Baumwoll for 38 years, we’ve lived our life proud; fought for civil rights; cared for each other. So, it’s especially meaningful, to be in a place where the LGBT community is served.

About The Print

TEST PRINT

The type of print is UV cured inkjet on a composite aluminum panel called Dibond. A UV Curing Inkjet Printer cures the ink practically instantly as powerful UV light is applied while the ink is being laid down. The other feature will be that the print will be cut to shape on a CNC Router.

The artwork will be made of of 53 diamonds. The diamond shape was given the name Rhombus by the mathematician Euclid, hence the title of the work Fifty Three Rhombuses. Each Rhombus is divided up into four triangles, each of varying color. For the test print, I did 5 of these Rhombuses at full size (see image above). I used this test print, not only to check color, but also to test the accuracy of the cutting. To my delight, the CNC router cut it with exacting accuracy; important because of the exacting nature of the geometric forms. The overall size of the final print will be 118″wide x 56″high.

Doing the printing is Vista Color Imaging in Cleveland. They do great work. I Enjoy working with them and they enjoy working with artists. Thank you Kim and Scott and the rest of the team!

Pratt Islamic Studies – Masjid I Jami Mosque – Isfahan

Section through Dome & Geometric Analysis of
the Masjid I Jami Mosque
click on image to enlarge


The most significant work Of Islamic Architecture that survives is the Masjid-i-Jami in Isfahan Iran. This mosque was initially built by the early Muslims who arrived in the first century after the Hijra. The Abbasids rebuilt it in 840-41 CE . The Buyids, who established the first local dynasty, enlarged it between 908-32 CE.

Above is my drawing of a cross section through the dome with three geometric sketches illustrating the proportion of parts and below are sketches studying the geometric proportional systems that delineate the proportion of it’s parts.

Sketches – Understanding the Underlying Geometric Proportional Systems
click on images to enlarge

The Masjid I Jami Isfahan

Related to my Islamic studies were explorations of my own geometric ideas influenced by what I was learning about in the Islamic creative tradition. The following are studies of patterns I created using and rotating the square. They were done on Hewlett Packard main frame computer using an early CAD software program.

Barry Bergdoll In Editorial Opinion in the New York Times Asks, “What is the Bauhaus”

The Bauhaus has been a great influence, on first my architecture and then my art. This month marks the centennial of its founding; a good time to revisit it’s influence over the last century.

Barry Bergdoll, professor of art history at Columbia University and chief curator of architecture at the Museum of Modern Art, opinions in an editorial in the New York Times, that the legacy of the Bauhaus has been turned into a kind of a trademark slogan; turned into style and fashion. The legacy of the Bauhaus has much more complexity, and as often been misunderstood, as Bergdoll so intelligently considers.

The building that housed the Bauhaus art school from 1925 to 1932 in Dessau, Germany, is today a museum. The founder of the Bauhaus, Walter Gropius, designed the structure. CreditSean Gallup/Getty Images


At its worst, Bauhaus has been reduced to mere style, a superficial sensibility informing labels, brands and fashion. Gropius and his acolytes recognized and deplored the idea, claiming that their designs arose from a pure functionalist embrace of modern materials, and in response to the demands of modern living — nothing more. “No Bauhaus Style and No Bauhaus Fashion,” a writer warned in the pages of the house organ, also calledBauhaus“Such facile stylistic labeling of the modern must be emphatically rejected.”

Barry Bergdoll

Click here to read the editorial